I recently upgraded from a SBDU (Le'Lit) to the Bezzera BZ07. I love it, but I also realize that preventative maintenance like descaling requires a slightly different procedure on HX machines. I read the instructions in Jim's water thread, but I'm pretty confused by the difference in the procedure for descaling the HX and the boiler. How does one distinguish what's being filled? I realize that this is a very HX newbie question. I thought I understood the general workings, but apparently I don't! So, with choice being the brew button, the hot water wand and the steam wand...which to use for which part of the procedure?
The brew button will draw water from the reservoir through the heat exchanger to the group head. Both the hot water wand and steam wand draw from the boiler.
So, if you're descaling only the heat exchanger, you want to make sure that the descaling solution doesn't go into the boiler if the autofill kicks on while you're drawing water through the heat exchanger (in which case you might as well shrug your shoulders, mix up some extra descaling solution, and do the whole machine). Which means you'll want to defeat the autofill when descaling the HX itself. This is usually done by grounding the lead that goes to the water probe.
I would say it all depends on how hard your water is. Scale build-up will affect the HX tube much faster than it will the boiler, as it will slow the rate at which the water passing through the tube heats, and decrease it's volume, forcing the pump to work harder to deliver the same volume of water. So, if the water is hard enough to leave scale deposits, I would descale the HX 2-3 times as frequently as I would descale the boiler. Scale sccumulation in the boiler is going to be primarily at the water line, so is nowhere near as quick to affect the operation of the machine.
As some are fond of saying, YMMV, but this is just my take on it.
Can you give me a link to this "Jim's water thread"?
I thought it was as easy as putting the descaling solution in with your water, then alternating between drawing it through your group head, steam wand and water valve, then fill it with fresh water and repeat the procedure a couple times till it runs clear, done - boiler and group head..
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